6 Character Changes at Walt Disney World You Need to Know About (March 2017)

Character meet and greets are a big part of what makes a trip to Walt Disney World so special, and in recent months Disney has taken it upon themselves to make a number of improvements and changes to each park’s character line-up. While not all of these changes are always popular with guests, Disney is constantly making adjustments to try and make character offerings as diverse as possible while still keeping things running efficiently around the parks.

In this month’s character update, we take a look at a character who is leaving Disney’s Hollywood Studios (and rumored to return somewhere else), three new additions, plus a short-term extension of a dining experience was previously set to be discontinued this mail. 

1. Moana meet and greet at Disney’s Hollywood Studios to end next month

Last fall Disney brough Moana from the film of the same name to One Man’s Dream at Disney’s Hollywood Studios for a limited time to promote the new movie inside this attraction. However, now that the DVD has been released for this movie, the promotion is no longer necessary, and Moana will be moving out sometime next month. 

However, though Moana fans might be initially disappointed to hear of this character’s departure, rumors have surfaced that Moana could be moving to the Magic Kingdom later this year, potentially to either Adventureland or the Princess Fairytale Hall. Of course, as with all rumors, nothing has been confirmed officially, but we wouldn’t be surprised if this happened, as Moana has proved to be quite the popular character during her time at Disney’s Hollywood Studios. 

2. Daisy Duck now joining Donald Duck at Disney’s Hollywood Studios

Image: Disney

Though Donald Duck has been meeting guests by himself at the front of Disney’s Hollywood Studios since late last year, it looks like this character is going to be joined by his pal Daisy, effective immediately. However, in an interesting change, it looks like these characters will not be meeting together, as there are now two different lines in front of the Sid Cahuenga’s building at this park, meaning guests who want to meet both characters will need to wait twice. 

It is unknown how long Daisy Duck will remain at Disney’s Hollywood Studios, but we’d guess she’ll stick around at least through the Spring Break travel period, which ends in mid-April. This character is currently not meeting anywhere else at Walt Disney World, so if you’re a fan, you may want to stop by this park soon! 

3. Date announced for BB-8 character meet and greet at Disney’s Hollywood Studios

Image: Disney

It has been confirmed that the new BB-8 character experience will debut in just a few weeks on April 14 2017, beginning on Star Wars Galactic Night. After this special event, this fun character will be available for guests to meet daily in a dedicated location at the Star Wars Launch Bay. And in case you were wondering, current Launch Bay residents Kylo Ren and Chewbacca, who are also available for meet and greets at this location, will continue to appear alongside this new character.

4. Disney Junior Play ‘n Dine now available for lunch through the summer

Image © Disney

Image: Disney

Last month we learned that the Disney Junior Play ‘n Dine character meal experience at Hollywood & Vine was going to be downsized in May, going from being available during breakfast and lunch to breakfast, only while Minnie’s Seasonal Dine took over lunch.

However, in an interesting development it looks like Disney has changed their mind and is now going to be continuing to offer Disney Junior Play ‘n’ Dine for lunch and dinner at Hollywood and Vine through the summer. The plan is still for Minnie’s Seasonal Dine to take over the lunch spot at this restaurant, but now that won’t happen until September 4th, 2017.

5. New Doc McStuffins meet and greet now available at Disney’s Animal Kingdom

Image: Disney

Several weeks ago Doc McStuffins began meeting guests at Disney’s Animal Kingdom in a brand new animal hospital-inspired area at Conservation Station inside the Rafiki’s Planet Watch area of the park. Guests can not only meet this character here, but can also bring their favorite toys for a mini check-up as well, making this one of the more unique ways for guests to meet this character.

In addition to this new meet and greet location, Doc McStuffins continues to be available daily at Disney’s Hollywood Studios as well and can also see guests at the aforementioned Disney Junior Play ‘n Dine. 

6. Cars 3 Characters come out for limited-time event at Disney Springs

Image: Disney

Cars 3 characters Lightning McQueen, Cruz Ramirez and Jackson Storm will be coming to Disney Springs this weekend from now until 26 for a limited time event as part of the Cars 3 Movie Tour. In addition to being able to meet these characters, guests who attend this special event will be able to preview of the upcoming movie and small children will have opportunities to do some hands-on crafts and play fun interactive games. The experience will be set up in the Marketplace district in the former bus loop, where the Christmas Tree Trail was during the holiday season. 

The event will kick off on Thursday, March 23 at 12:00 p.m. and will run until 7:00 PM that night. On Friday, March 24, and Saturday, March 25, the event will run from 11:00 AM to 7:00 PM. Finally, on Sunday, March 26, this event will be open from 11:00 AM until 5:00 PM

How do you feel about all of these character changes around Walt Disney World? Will you be checking out any of the new character meet and greet options around the resort?

Don Korta
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